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Missing Girls - raising awareness in Calcutta Schools about Sex Trafficking - Part Two

August 1 2017 | Blog

We are collaborating with the MISSING project to develop our Social Enterprise.

Among the many other wonderful things they are doing, the MISSING project works with The Women and Child Development India program to spread awareness about sexual exploitation and trafficking through schools. 

They have six assigned teams conducting the awareness sessions, each team is scheduled to cover 10-12 schools a month, which gives them 70 schools in all. They target high schools as young adolescents are the most vulnerable. A typical session includes the team getting familiar with the class, asking the children what their hobbies and interests are. After which they delve into more serious matters by narrating a story of a girl, Ayesha, who was a victim of sex trafficking.

We visited a school in central Calcutta with them, an area with a particularly high incidence of girls going missing.

After the Missing Girls team had finished the awareness talk we all went into the playground to spray paint the iconic 'Missing Girl' stencil onto the wall.

The stencil is the inspired creation of the artist Leena Kejriwal who founded the campaign. The black silhouette of a young girl symbolises a black hole cut out from the fabric of our environment to show how millions of girls disappear from families and communities every day.

It takes just 3 days for a girl to go missing, being sold on several times means that she's impossible to trace. That means losing her identity, her family and remnants of a happy childhood. It’s devastating. With this project they want to increase awareness about how vulnerable girls are trafficked and how the community as a collective can bring about solutions.

The telephone number for India's 'Child Line' is also stencilled above the silhouette.

Sex trafficking is a dark, deeply upsetting issue, widely prevalent in the world. On a global, industrial scale it is second only to the drug trade in the black market. The increasing levels of sex trafficking and child sexual exploitation, on a yearly basis, means that this is fast becoming everybody's problem. We can't ignore it, it will affect us all. We can all do something to help stop this trade, and save millions of girls who are vulnerable, and rescue the lives of those who have been victims of this abuse.

#everygirlmatters #everychildmatters #stoptrafficking #stopchildsexualexploitation

Using art for activism, MISSING have launched a global campaign on child trafficking.

You can see the stencils all over Calcutta and they are now popping up all over the world.

 You can help - visit MISSING to see how.

Love Louise x

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